A DECLARATION OF WAR, Killing People to Save the Animals and the Environment,
FINDING PEACE IN TIMES OF WAR
? Some of you may be agreeing with the liberators’ assessment of human nature, society, and the inadequacy and inappropriateness of non-violent resistance for the liberation movement. You feel connected, as they do, to other beings in our family of creatures. You feel you must do something to defend your family. But the methods of liberation, withdrawing from society or staying marginally in society to engage in militant interventionism, are too difficult for you to fully practice at this time, even though you agree with them in principle. You don’t want to be part of the problem, but you can’t yet see yourself as part of the liberator solution, which is waging war with humans and their society. What do the liberators say you can do? ?
This is a good time to ask a difficult question. If liberators believe that humans are irrational, inconsistent, cruel, near-sighted, greedy, barbarous, alienated from themselves and nature, and covered from head to toe with the blood of innocent beings, what makes liberators believe that they are an exception? ?
The fact is, liberators recognize that they are no different. They, too, are human, and accept that they suffer from the human condition. They see themselves as products of society, social creatures who are an integration of culture and nature. But it is not a black and white situation. When it comes to assessing one’s involvement in human cruelty and the bloodshed it causes, liberators believe there are many shades of red. ?
As the liberators see it, the hunter who seeks out life to kill is deeply red. So is the researcher, and the drug manufacturer, and the slaughter house worker, and the trapper, and the furrier, and the fisherman, and the breeder, and the pet shop owner, and the highway driver. The list is as long as there are people in society. Everyone who participates in the cruelty of society bears the stigma of its bloodletting. ?
Clearly, as far as the liberators are concerned, a vegan who doesn’t drive, makes so little money that she pays no income taxes, and spends her time rescuing animals from local farms is a lighter shade of red than an animal researcher who hunts on weekends, eats meat, and pays thousands in taxes to support the killing machine. ?
When you chose to participate in society, even to liberate animals through militant interventionism, you are a shade of red. Even withdrawing from society does not cleanse you of redness. Withdrawal is a matter of degree. When you withdraw you take with you something from the cruel society, whether it be supplies or information. As a cultural animal, society is with you wherever you go. It affects the way you act, think and feel. ?
On a more tangible note, liberators point out that when you withdraw from society you are going to be living on somebody’s land. If it is your own, you will have to pay taxes on it. If it is forest service or private land, you will probably have to deal with officials. The days of Walden Pond, where Thoreau left civilization, are over. In fact, Walden Pond is now a State run facility, and you have to pay a few bucks to go to its beach. ?
The fact that perfection is difficult to achieve, however, does not mean that it should be discarded as a goal. Liberators criticized Gandhi for relying on super-human Satyagrahis for his non-violent revolution. It could be argued that they, too, are demanding super-human dedication, clarity and commitment to be a liberator. But they realize that few people can be committed to a consistent moral position and make the types of deep sacrifices they are recommending. ?
Liberators suggest that we be realistic. Most people, even the most committed ones, are going to have difficulty withdrawing from society to the greatest extent possible. Few people will take their children out of school and leave for the forest to be self-sufficient survivalists, even though such a life would be more natural and healthy, not to mention more ethical. ?
But, as liberators see it, this is the beginning of the liberation movement. As the few people who are willing to make a sacrifice of their material and social comforts leave for the wilderness, small communities will form. It will become progressively easier for people to leave society as these communities develop. ?
The fact is, people need other people. We are social beings. Yet, because of our sensitivities to non-humans, we feel disgusted and alienated from others who blindly practice the culture of cruelty. Many people feel, as liberators do, like aliens from another planet whenever they are out in society. ?
There are times when we feel like we have stepped out of reality and into the Twilight Zone, as when we go to shopping centers and see them filled with blank-faced, mindless consumers, or when we see restaurants lining the city streets selling the flesh of slaughtered creatures. The fact that people can live in urban settings, with traffic jams, pollution, overcrowding, rampant consumerism, and the total destruction of the natural environment and its replacement with asphalt and high rise buildings, is testimony to human alienation from nature. Humans are even alienated from their own natures as animals. We wonder how people can live such a life. As we reflect on this insanity, we feel alone in the world – like millions of other people! ?
Because of our social natures, however, our distaste for other people and our alienation from them and their culture does not stop us from feeling a need to be among them to some extent. How do liberators resolve this ambivalence? ?
They realize that they are not alone in their alienation from the insanity of others. Even now, communities exist in the forests and mountains where people have withdrawn from society to the greatest extent possible and live a natural life among other like-minded souls. They have discovered that they did not need to sacrifice their sensibilities for human companionship. ?
In truth, such a sacrifice is useless. When we give up our sensibilities to be with alien people, we become alienated from ourselves, and loose all chances of finding fulfilling companionship. Remember, the basis for enjoying others is the ability to find empathy with them. You can’t empathize with aliens, because, by definition, aliens are those with whom you do not identify, and identification is the basis of empathy. You are only wasting your time with people whom you cannot relate to. ?
Let me illustrate this dilemma with a common example. As a vegan, you feel anxious every time your family invites you over for Thanksgiving. You know that a member of your wider family, a turkey, will be slaughtered, disemboweled, beheaded, plucked, cooked, and eaten for this occasion, and you want no part of it. To make you happy, the hosts have made some vegetables for you to eat. They expect you to be content sitting with them as they devour the turkey, as long as you can eat your vegetables. They expect you to respect their behaviors as long as they respect yours. ?
Some people submit themselves to this abuse each year in the name of civility, friendship, or family loyalty. Of course, as far as the turkey is concerned, you are not being civil, friendly, or loyal. To liberators, it is all human-centered bullshit! ?
Other people have declined such invitations, choosing to feel lonely rather than disgusted. ?
Still others have realized that there are other vegans with the same feelings of alienation who would love to get together. There is nothing so wonderful as eating a vegan meal with other vegans, when you finally feel a connection to other humans. Such community feeling is happening in the liberation movement, even in the wilderness. Liberators suggest you keep your eyes and ears open for others with like mind. ?
Liberators, then, believe that people can withdraw from society without having to miss quality human companionship. It’s just a matter of finding the right, like-minded people. As for militant interventionism, liberators suggest that people who currently decide to stay within society can capitalize on their situation and become saboteurs. A committed individual can lower his or her standard of living in order to consume as little as possible, can drive as seldom as possible, and can eat a vegan diet. This will lighten their shade of red. As far as liberators are concerned, acts of militant interventionism, from a brick through a pet store window and the liberation of animals, to the slashing of animal transport vehicle tires, will lighten their shade even further. ?
Two people who read this book and agree with its principles can work together, recommend liberators. One can work as an infiltrator in a lab, or a slaughter house, or a grocery store, and feed the other information for militant intervention. If someone makes more money than they need, liberators suggest that they can support someone else who wants to spend all of his or her time in sabotage. ?
What liberators believe this shows is that people can participate in the liberation movement without needing to be perfect human beings. Realizing that we are not perfect is like realizing that we cannot change society. It makes no sense to lament what we can not be; but we can find optimism and hope in realizing what we can become. Liberators hope we, too, can engage in animal liberation to the greatest degree possible, all the time trying to become more consistent, more militant, and further removed from society. According to liberators, we can all engage in the life long process of becoming a lighter shade of red. ?
But what about the multitudes of people who feel sympathy for the liberation position, but simply oppose any form of force against humans? The majority of people who care for animals are simple, compassionate folks, wanting to make the lives of animals more pleasant at the hands of human tyrants. They are never going to drop out of society, break the law, or even go to a rally against vivisection or fur. They will, however, send money to animal groups, treat their pets well, and feel guilty every time they eat a steak. These people are the bread and butter of the animal defender constituency. What role do liberators see these people playing? ?
This is an important question. The fact is that few people will take up the life of a liberator. Liberators hope that those who do not join them can at least admit to themselves that such a life, with its strategies of withdrawal and militant interventionism, is the most consistent position to take if one wishes to live as a true animal defender, and the most effective method for liberating our family of creatures from human oppression. If they admit this to themselves, and consider the liberation ethic an ideal, liberators hope they can also admit it to others.At the very least, they can stop condemning liberation activities, such as Animal Liberation Front raids, as unacceptable acts of “terrorism.” ?
This is a real issue that is currently splitting the animal defense movement. Most large animal organizations are quick to condemn A.L.F. raids in the hope of maintaining an air of respectability. They know that A.L.F. activities cause the public, the opposition, and the media, to paint the entire movement with one brush, calling all animal defenders “terrorists.” Knowing that moderate members, like the ones just described who oppose illegal activity of any sort, will stop sending donations to groups which support such activities, these groups are eager to take a loyalty oath to society and denounce any illegalities committed in the name of animal liberation. ?
A.L.F. activities are not only to be praised, according to the liberators, but the people doing these raids should be encouraged to be more confrontational and destructive to oppressive humans, a position which the A.L.F. publicly denounces. Liberators hope to persuaded all those who wish to engage in A.L.F. activities to practice militant interventionism in a broader form. ?
It is not the liberators’ intention to belittle people who cannot accept the full commitment of becoming a liberator. Their premise that people are extremely imperfect demands that they be sensitive to human frailty. People participating in the system are a darker shade of red than a liberator. The liberators state that they can slightly compensate for their participation by assisting the liberation movement as much as possible. ?
These people, according to liberators, can influence that 12 % of the public who care about ethical issues, but would be alienated by the more rigorous and extreme position of the liberator. People change slowly, and there is a place in the movement for people to assist others in moving towards a liberation ethic. The more people who become sympathetic to the liberation cause, the more the animals will be helped. ?
This means that standard tactics of writing to Congressmen, holding a rally, writing letters to the editor, and talking with friends, fellow workers, and family, have their place in the eyes of liberators. These tactics will not free animals, but they will cause the oppressors some grief as they scramble to maintain control over consumer’s behaviors. ?
Remember, according to liberators, trying to improve the moral fiber of society is a lost cause. Efforts must be focused on monkeywrenching the abusive system, creating obstacles to oppression. Anything that causes the animal abusers difficulty in carrying out their oppression is a good deed. Spending money on lobbyists, television commercials, and lawyers makes animal abuse more painful and less rewarding. ?
In other words, these standard tactics are annoyances to the powerful abusers, not a prevention of their activities. There is no way to stop them on a large, societal scale. But liberators feel they can stop them on a small, individual scale. To do this they believe they must practice militant interventionism. ?
Their position on non-violent tactics is that they work minimally, but are better than nothing. However, they should not be used with the hope of transforming society. They believe that no one will ever change society in any meaningful way in favor of animal respect. Non-violent tactics should be used, say the liberators, with the intent of monkeywrenching the system, not changing it. The more people feel that non-violent efforts will change the system, the less willing they will be to revolt against it. This is why liberators feel non-violence is dangerous if practiced for the wrong reason. False hopes that i can work will hurt the animals in the long run. It perpetuates a belief in the system and a commitment to working things out with abusive humans and their abusive social machine. ?
In short, liberators ask that animal supporters make their best contribution to the liberation movement, and support those who are willing to be extreme in their approach. Supporting them is supporting the animals that they are rescuing. ?
Liberators have a positive outlook about their work and their approach. They hope their positive outlook is contagious, for there is much to feel positive about. The motivation for their actions are based on their feelings, particularly their empathy for all beings in our family. Liberators are loving people. But love does not have to be manifested only in our suffering for abused family members. They can also have empathy for free, happy members. Empathy is a flexible tool for connecting with others. It allows us to feel another’s pains or pleasures. As empathic beings, liberators feel they can also find true happiness in the world, even as they work to relieve suffering. ?
Put differently, the more pain you feel the more pleasure you can also feel. Empathy makes liberators passionate people. They feel they can cry with the oppressed and laugh with the free. An ability to empathize and feel a connection to others is essential for feeling love, since love is the ultimate form of connection. Liberators say they do not have to limit themselves to loving only those who are suffering. ?
The example they use to explain this is that, if you had many brothers and sisters, and some of them were being tortured and murdered, you would dedicate your life to liberating them, However, that would not limit you from receiving pleasure from the love for your other brothers and sisters who are free. ?
What this all boils down to is that liberators feel it is all right to enjoy life, despite the carnage that surrounds them. Liberators believe their empathy makes them capable of feeling true love. They claim that they are probably the most fulfilled, loving, self-actualized people on Earth. ?
For those willing to enter the process of becoming a liberator, liberators offer more words of encouragement. These were included on the cassette. ?
“Your emotions are powerful, not only in making you receptive to love as well as suffering, but in sustaining your commitment to liberation. Many people are motivated by their heads. They have become so alienated from nature that they allow themselves to get caught up in mind games, and give their heads preference over their hearts. Hearts are intuitive, while the intellect needs reasons and explanations that intuition cannot provide. ?
These head trip people are the ones who read books like? Diet for a new America ?, by John Robbins, and intellectually appreciate the importance of becoming a vegan. They might even try it for a few weeks, or maybe even a few months, and then give up because it was too difficult to eat in restaurants, or because they really love eating turkey flesh on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Some will go back to eating meat when they read another book, by another self-proclaimed expert, telling them that meat is necessary for good health. Head trippers have no staying power. The mind is a fickle organ. ?
We do not expect head trippers to ever become liberators. It takes commitment and lots of heart to do our job. You may have the heart that it takes. Be proud of yourself and your ability to feel if you have this rare sensitivity. ?
You might feel alone in your commitment to liberation. You are not. Realistically, we must expect that most people will resist the messages in this book. People suck! There’s no getting around that fact. But there will be others like ourselves who will recognize these truths, and who will join our cause. Our numbers will always be few compared to the abusers and cowards. Our small numbers make each of us even more valuable and special. But our numbers will grow, as our efforts reinforce and validate others who feel the way we do. And many thousands of people feel as we do. ?
The fact that we do not announce our activities as do standard groups makes our numbers uncountable. One liberator can seem like hundreds, as the paranoid minds of abusers reap the bitter harvest they have sown. Take pride in your courage, and feel confident in your effectiveness. The animals are benefiting from our efforts. To the liberated animal we mean the difference between life and death. Every liberator is a true hero.”
This book was written to explain the intellectual justification used by those who believe in animal liberation. The issues are complex, as you have discovered. I have tried presenting them clearly and concisely. Please re-read this book, understand what has been said, and decide on its validity. ?
Everyone reading this book is an animal abuser, according to the liberators. For that reason, if for none other, we should all be concerned about their message and approach. Chances are that violence will accelerate over the years as people become increasingly disenchanted working within the system. At the same time, the growing human population virtually guarantees increased animal abuse. The situation is becoming critical. ?
In the meantime, millions of our brothers and sisters are dying each day. Right or wrong, liberators have empowered themselves to do what they feel is right for our family. For them, the war has begun! ? ?
? About The Author
I am sure that many of you would like to know who I am. My identity is something I expect to never reveal. Those who abuse animals for a living, or for pleasure, or just out of habit, will want to hunt me down to prove that they have the power to continue their oppressive lifestyles. Those who call themselves animal rights or welfare organizations will want to squelch my presentation of the liberators’ condemnation of the human-centered status quo, in which they prosper. In short, I expect very few people will receive my words of truth with honest delight and acceptance. ?
In the event that someone tries to capitalize on my pseudonymous state and claims that he or she is Screaming Wolf, perhaps in an attempt to discredit my work, or to gain personal notoriety, please check with the publishers of this book. They do not know who I am at present, but I will reveal myself to them first, before any public statements are made. It is through them that I shall speak. ? ?
Original publisher’s note:
The text of this book was printed in the form in which it was received on a computer disk. No editing of its contents has occurred. All emphases are those of the author, Screaming Wolf. We are not responsible for its contents, and its publication is not meant as an endorsement of any of its statements, policies, or positions.